Gabriel Chaile’s colossal clay sculptures live with ancestral history

Art, as Chaile described it, allows “utopias of change to exist in a world not only thought of by and for people.” His installation of five sculptures is the result of his research process, which he The genealogy of form or ‘genealogy of form’. For this body of work, Chaile focused on his family’s genealogy. Each of the baking dishes represents a member of his family: his mother and father, his paternal grandparents and his maternal grandmother, Rosario Liendro. The matriarch’s dedicated sculpture is the centerpiece of the installation.

Growing up, Chaile’s parents told him about their lives, the experiences of friends and relatives, and the history of Argentina. Through his sculptural practice, Chaile translates these oral stories into physical forms, interpreting and recording ancestral knowledge and stories that have been overlooked or violently suppressed by Spanish colonialism and its aftermath. “I like intense stories, whose power remains engraved in what we call memories,” Chaile said, “and which are not heard for their simplicity, or because they do not participate in the center where the story is woven.”

Chaile continued: “The colonization process did not end with the declaration of independence of the new state of Argentina. It systematically proceeded with the educational and “civilizer” plan to create a united Argentina; to blot out what was called barbarity.” These colonial processes, which go on under different names, the artist calls genealogy of form. He described Argentina as a country that has become known for trying to embody Europe, and in its eagerness, “has forcibly extinguished thousands of voices, causing oblivion and lack of interest in memory.”

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